Proposal for a Senate Resolution Requesting that the 2019 Senate Amend the Constitution, Removing Reference to Slavery

 

 
Call 802.828.2228 and ask your Senator to take up this Resolution.  Find your Senator here: https://legislature.vermont.gov/people/search/2018  Also, send a note to the Senate Judiciary Committee at this address: vermont-senate-judiciary@googlegroups.com  Subject line: “Constitutional Amendment –  Slavery” 

Senate resolution relating to encouraging its members, in 2019, to initiate an amendment to the Vermont Constitution regarding the removal of all reference to slavery. 

Whereas, the original Vermont Constitution of 1777, allowed for the holding of males until the age of 21, females until the age of 18 and anyone bound by law for payment of debts, damages, fines, costs, or the like to be held as slaves.

Whereas, the revised Vermont Constitution of 1786, continued to allow for the holding of males until the age of 21, females until the age of 18 and anyone bound by law for payment of debts, damages, fines, costs, or the like to be held as slaves.

Whereas, the adopted Vermont Constitution of 1793, continued to allow for the holding of males until the age of 21, females until the age of 18 and anyone bound by law for payment of debts, damages, fines, costs, or the like to be held as slaves

Whereas, the Vermont Constitution being amended by Conventions in 1828, 1836, 1850, and 1870, continued to allow for the holding of males until the age of 21, females until the age of 18 and anyone bound by law for payment of debts, damages, fines, costs, or the like to be held as slaves

Whereas, the Vermont Constitution being amended by the people in 1883 and 1913 continued to allow for the holding of males until the age of 21, females until the age of 18 and anyone bound by law for payment of debts, damages, fines, costs, or the like to be held as slaves 

Whereas, the Vermont Constitution being amended by the people in 1924 continued to allow for the holding of males until the age of 21, changed the age of females from 18 to 21 and continued to allow anyone bound by law for payment of debts, damages, fines, costs, or the like to be held as slaves

Whereas, the Vermont Constitution being amended by the people 27 additional times, 25 of which were ratified, the last of which being as recent as 2010, to this day continues to allow for the holding of males AND females until the age of 21 and anyone bound by law for payment of debts, damages, fines, costs, or the like to be held as slaves.

Whereas, Vermont is the ONLY state in the United States that constitutionally allows for the holding of males AND females until the age of 21 and anyone bound by law for payment of debts, damages, fines, costs, or the like to be held as slaves.

Whereas, every voter solemnly swears (or affirms) that whenever they giving their vote or suffrage, touching any matter that concerns the State of Vermont, they will do it so as in their conscience they shall judge will most conduce to the best good of the same, as established by the Constitution, without fear or favor of any person.

Whereas, every officer, whether judicial, executive, or military, in authority under this State, solemnly swears (or affirms) that they will be true and faithful to the State of Vermont, and that they will not, directly or indirectly, do any act or thing injurious to the Constitution or Government thereof.

Whereas, every State Representative solemnly swears (or affirms) that as a member of the Assembly, they will not propose, or assent to, any bill, vote or resolution, which shall appear to them injurious to the people, nor do nor consent to any act or thing whatever, that shall have a tendency to lessen or abridge their rights and privileges, as declared by the Constitution of this State.

Whereas, the Vermont Constitution is the foundation of governmental structure, political processes, and limitations on the use of power and underpins all of the laws of the Green Mountain State of Vermont.

Resolved by the Senate:

That the Senate of the State of Vermont encourages its members, in 2019, to initiate a Vermont Constitutional Amendment to read as follows:

 “Article 1. [All persons born free; their natural rights; slavery prohibited]

“That all persons are born equally free and independent, and have certain natural, inherent, and unalienable rights, amongst which are the enjoying and defending life and liberty, acquiring, possessing and protecting property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety; therefore no person born in this country, or brought from over sea, ought to be holden by law, to serve any person as a servant, slave or apprentice. , after arriving to the age of twenty-one years, unless bound by the person’s own consent, after arriving to such age, or bound by law for the payment of debts, damages, fines, costs, or the like.”

“VOTER QUALIFICATIONS OF FREEMEN AND FREEWOMEN”

  • 42. [VOTER’S QUALIFICATIONS AND OATH